National Assocation of Deacons conference


The National Assocation of Deacons (NAD) will gather at St Leo’s College at the University of Queensland in Brisbane from 30 June to 3 July for its biennial conference.

Over four days of presentations, discussions, fellowship and worship, Deacons from across Australia will reflect on the conference theme: 'Believe what you read. Teach what you believe. Practice what you teach'.

Archbishop of Brisbane, Most Rev John Bathersby DD, will be the principal celebrant at the opening Mass. Auxiliary Bishop of Brisbane, Most Rev Joseph Oudeman DD OFM Cap, will explore the first part of the rite: “Receive the Gospel of Christ whose herald you now are”. He will consider what this part of the rite means for the Deacon and for the Church.

Father Bill O’Shea, a former Rector of the Seminary and lecturer in Biblical Studies, will consider “Believe what you Read”, including aspects of Scriptural exegesis and the importance of engaging with prayer and scholarship in understanding the text of Scripture in the context of the faith of the Church.

Mrs Penny Carroll will address “Teach what you believe”, considering aspects of preaching and communication of the Word. Penny had been on the staff at St Paul’s Theological College for a number of years teaching in the area of pastoral ministry including homiletics, communication and group dynamics.

Deacon Gary Stone will consider “Practice what you teach” and reflect on the many ways in which a Deacon proclaims the Gospel through pastoral action, justice and witness. Deacon Gary has served in the army as both a soldier and chaplain and currently also serves with the Australian Federal Police as a chaplain. He has extensive experience with pastoral ministry and with projects in Timor Leste.

Deacon Anthony Gooley will consider “After ordination: what the Deacon could be”, reflecting on the possibilities for ministerial placement of Deacons offered by the Directory for the Ministry and Life of Deacons. Deacon Anthony has engaged with national and international research on diaconate and the theology which underpins it and has presented at conferences and seminars for a number of dioceses.

Each regional representative of NAD and the Eastern Churches representative will provide a written round up of all things diaconal. This will be complemented with NAD Chair Deacon Mark Powell and Australian Catholic Bishops Conference Diaconate Coordinator Deacon Paul Simmons both reporting from a national perspective.

The conference program welcomes participation from all interested in the Diaconate, including the spouse of Deacons, aspirants and all members of the clergy.

For more information, visit or phone either Tim Shanahan on 07 5491 2011 or Russ Nelson on 0427 74 3534.


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